Audy is a young woman living in the massive trade city of Heredo. When we meet her, she wears gray skirts with a white shirt, not unlike this one (but not with braids).
When she was growing up, her older brother, Ren, worked in the mines outside the Aliyan Mountains. She doesn’t know what he did; she just knows he was a foreman of some kind, a manager. He didn’t have to get his hands dirty. One day, however, something changed. He became ill with the kind of body-eating disease that doesn’t manifest all at once — just gentle poison leaking from his bones until he had to quit his job and come home. Now, he spends most of his days in bed, and Audy and their mother take care of him. Their father still works at the mines, and they rarely see him, since it’s a week-long journey to the Aliyan Mountains.
It’s clear that Audy wants to find a cure for her brother’s illness. But she’s read every book in the city and still hasn’t found anything useful. She has heard of the scholars at the Great Library of Granaeic, but she doesn’t want to leave her mother alone to take care of Ren. But it looks like she’s going to have to.
Audy has an affinity for the element of Water. Everyone in this universe has an elemental affinity to a certain degree, but most people aren’t strong enough in “magic” (more of a sensitivity) to do anything about it. Audy has a bit more trouble with hers. She knows that water feels right to her — but it’s more than that. As she gets older and starts traveling with Raki, a strange woman she meets in the market one day, her memory starts acting up.
The tricky thing about looking at your reflection in an undisturbed lake is that if you move the wrong way, the ripples distort your image, fanning out from the original disturbance until your face doesn’t look quite right anymore. Audy’s memory works a bit like this. Her mind acts up sometimes , causing memories to surface when she didn’t summon them — sometimes to disastrous consequences. Because Audy’s body doesn’t know they’re memories. So if she remembers, for instance, a hot day, her skin will feel the warmth of the sun that exists only in her mind.
You’ll see what I mean soon. I’m excited about how complicated this is sounding. It will be a challenge to write, but I can’t wait to get started.